Setting: Mendi Provincial Hospital, Southern Highlands
Province, Papua New Guinea (PNG).
Background: PNG is a high burden country for tuberculosis (TB) and TB-human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).
TB is the second most common cause of death in PNG.
Objective: To identify the number of adult inpatients
with TB who died between 1 January 2015 and 30 August 2017; describe these patients’ characteristics and
identify contributing factors that could be modified.
Design: This was a retrospective case series review.
Results: Among 905 inpatients with TB during the study
period, there were 90 deaths. The patients who died
were older than those who survived (median age 40
years vs. 32 years, P = 0.011). The majority of patients
who died lived less than 3 hours from the hospital (71%),
were diagnosed after admission (79%) and were clinically
diagnosed (77%). HIV status was not known in 50% of
the deaths. Of patients with a known status, 27% (12/45)
were HIV-positive. The median symptom duration prior
to presentation was 28 days, with females presenting
later than males (84 vs. 28 days, P = 0.008).
Conclusion: This study highlights areas where community and hospital-based management of TB could be improved to potentially reduce TB mortality, including earlier detection and treatment, improved bacteriological
diagnosis and increased HIV testing.
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